EU encouraged by talks on Tibetan issue

April 25th, 2008 - 3:54 pm ICT by admin  

Beijing, April 25 (DPA) Jose Manuel Barroso, president of European Commission, which is the executive arm of the European Union (EU), said he was “encouraged” by the talks he had with Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao on Tibet here Friday. “I am particularly encouraged by our exchanges on Tibet,” said Barroso after meeting his Chinese counterpart. “I hope to see positive developments soon”, he added.

Barroso reaffirmed that the European Union (EU) considers Tibet as part of China, and repeated his resistance against a boycott of the Olympic games in Beijing.

“For the success of the Olympic Games it must be taken place in a peaceful atmosphere,” said the EU leader and added that it is necessary to “protect human rights of the people”

Barroso did not give further details of the discussions that he described as an “open exchange.” Journalists were not allowed to ask questions during a joint press conference held in Beijing.

It was the first round of a series of high-ranking meetings between China and the EU, which had been agreed upon months ago.

Barroso has travelled to Beijing with nine EU commissioners to address a range of topics from climate protection, trade and market issues to energy cooperation.

The talks have been overshadowed by protests against Chinese authorities in Tibet and a security crackdown there. The government’s harsh reaction to the unrest has prompted calls in Europe for a boycott of the opening ceremony of this summer’s Beijing Olympics.

In addition, the European Chamber of Commerce in China has complained that new visa rules ahead of the Olympics are making it difficult to conduct between the European Union and China.

Among other restrictions to business travellers, China has declared no new multiple entry visas would be issued until October.

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